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3 Monster Growth Stocks to Buy From the Drybulk Space, According to One Analyst

Even though COVID still makes headlines, with Delta and other variants, the world is starting to emerge from the economic disruptions of the pandemic. Vaccination programs are expanding, and –
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Even though COVID still makes headlines, with Delta and other variants, the world is starting to emerge from the economic disruptions of the pandemic. Vaccination programs are expanding, and – with the notable exception of Australia – governments are growing leery of imposing strict lockdowns again. The result is a return to economic growth, and a resumption of global trade.

While supply chains still have not returned to normal, some industries are showing impressive gains. Drybulk, the seaborne trade in raw materials carried in bulk lots on freight vessels, is one of these.

Looking at the near- to mid-term prospects for global trade, H.C. Wainwright analyst analyst Magnus Fyhr writes: “…we remain constructive on the outlook for the drybulk market as we believe moderating demand growth coupled with limited fleet growth should result in further tightening of the supply/demand balance and support strong vessel earnings over the next year. While seaborne trade volumes are well above pre-pandemic levels and growth in China is slowing down, commodity demand for the rest of the world is catching up and should support further growth in seaborne trade volumes.”

Fyhr goes on to point out several drybulk equities that he sees continuing to gain in the current trade environment. We are talking returns of at least 40% over the next 12 months. It also doesn’t hurt that each stock is admired by the rest of the analyst community, enough so to earn a “Strong Buy” consensus rating.

StarBulk Carriers (SBLK)

We’ll start with Star Bulk Carriers, a specialist in the drybulk ocean trade. This Greek-based company has an ‘on the water’ fleet of 128 carriers, averaging 9.3 years old and including both the largest Newcastlemax and Capesize carriers for the long hauls as well as the smaller Ultramax and Supramax vessels that hope from port to port along coasts. Shares in Star have gained 188% this year.

The quality of Star’s fleet and capabilities is clear from the company’s financial performance. In early August, Star reported a net profit of $124.2 million for 2Q21, or $1.22 per share. This result represented tremendous gain turnaround from the 46-cent net loss reported in the year-ago quarter, and was up 238% from Q1. At the top line, the $311 million reported revenue was more than double the year-ago figure, and the best quarterly revenue in over two years. The company finished the quarter with $238 million cash on hand.

Star’s sound finances backed the company’s 70-cent per common share dividend. The payment, which was slashed down to just 5 cents during the pandemic crisis, has been raised twice so far this year. The current payment annualizes to $2.80 per common share and gives a solid yield of 4.2%.

Star shares have raced ahead 188% this year, but would you believe it could go up another 45%? H.C. Wainwright's Fyhr does. The analyst rates SBLK a Buy along with a $35 price target. (To watch Fyhr’s track record, click here)

"With most of the fleet operating in the spot market, we believe SBLK is well positioned to capture current strength in the spot market. With an average fleet cash break-even level of $9,800/day, including debt amortization, we believe SBLK is poised to generate significant cash flows in 2021 and 2022. While spot rates are at a ten-year high, we still believe that we are in the early stages of a multi-year cycle as steady demand growth coupled with lower fleet growth should result in improved utilization and firmer charter rates over the next few years," Fyhr opined.

The analyst summed up, "We believe SBLK shares are attractively valued trading at 4.5x our 2021E EV/EBITDA and a 9% premium to our current NAV estimate of $21.63/share compared to the drybulk yield peer group..."

A full house of Buys – 5, in fact – provides the shipping company with a Strong Buy consensus rating from the Street. The average price target comes in at $31.75 and indicates ~31% upside from current levels. (See SBLK stock analysis on TipRanks)

Eagle Bulk Shipping (EGLE)

Next up, Eagle Bulk Shipping, is another major player in the drybulk sector. The company focuses on the shorter-haul trade, with a fleet of Ultramax and Supramax vessels in the 50K to 65K ton deadweight range. Eagle’s fleet comprises 53 vessels totaling 3.2 million tons – and at 8.8 years average, it’s a younger fleet than Star’s above. Eagle’s ships carry a wide range of cargos, including cement and coal, fertilizer and grains, and iron and other ores.

In the second quarter of this year, Eagle posted revenues of $129.9 million, up more than 126% from the year-ago quarter. EPS was down 10 cents sequentially, from 84 cents in Q1 to 74 cents in 2Q21. Higher charter rates this year compared to last year helped to drive the increase in revenues. Eagle reported $83.8 million in cash as of the end of June, as well as an additional $56 million in undrawn credit, to balance $176 million in outstanding debt.

Wainwright’s Fyhr initiated coverage of Eagle with a Buy rating and an $80 price target that indicates potential for 49% growth over the coming year.

Backing this stance, the analyst points to sound fundamentals in the drybulk carrying sector: “With slower fleet growth and robust Chinese demand for iron ore and coal, we expect the drybulk market to continue to improve, albeit at a slower pace than in 2021. While demand growth is expected to exceed supply growth in 2022, we believe much of the demand growth hinges on that drybulk demand recovers in the rest of the world to offset slowing demand in China.”

The analyst added, "We believe EGLE shares offer an attractive play on the drybulk market with a clear focus on the Supramax/Ultramax market segment... We believe EGLE shares are attractively valued trading at 3.1x 2021 EV/EBITDA and 14% discount to our NAV estimate of $59.34/share, which compares favorably to the drybulk peer group..."

Overall, there are only 3 analyst reviews on file for this company, and all agree that the stock is a Buy proposition. EGLE shares are priced at $53.65 with an average target of $70.67 suggesting an upside of ~32% in the next 12 months. (See EGLE stock analysis on TipRanks)

Genco Shipping, Inc. (GNK)

We’ll wrap up with Genco, another operator of high-end, modern bulk carriers. Like Star above, Genco operates a fleet of mixed capacity, from Supramax vessels of 55K deadweight tonnage to the largest oceangoing Capesize carriers.

Genco has seen recent strong gains in revenues and earnings, as well as a sharp increase in share price. GNK is up nearly 190% this year, and the company beat the revenue and earnings estimates in its 2Q21 financial report. That quarterly report showed $121 million at the top line with a net income of $32 million, or 75 cents per share. The EPS was the highest since 2010. Genco finished the second quarter with $161.2 million in cash on the balance sheet.

These sound results are supported by increasing charter rates in the shipping industry, and improved efficiencies in fuel usage. On the latter note, Genco in June entered into a multi-company framework agreement to test the viability of ammonia as an alternative fuel for maritime uses. The feasibility study is part of larger efforts to decarbonize the global bulk carrier fleet.

Since alt fuels are still in the early study stage, Genco is also taking steps to modernize its fleet. The company in May entered an agreement to acquire two new Ultramax vessels in 2022. These new vessels will be constructed in China and delivered to Genco in January of next year. Both new vessels will incorporate fuel efficiency technology to improve operating costs.

For Q2, Genco increased its dividend from 5 cents per common share to 10 cents. This was the second consecutive quarterly dividend increase, and marks a commitment by the company to grow the dividend back to pre-pandemic levels. At the current level, the dividend yield is modest, just under 1%.

Once again, we check in with H.C. Wainwright's Fyhr. The analyst sees Genco holding a solid position in its industry, writing of the company: “We believe GNK shares offer an attractive play on the drybulk market as the Capesize fleet is highly leveraged to Brazilian iron ore exports while the Supramax fleet provides stable cash flows to cover debt service and overhead.… In addition, GNK has installed scrubbers on 17 of its larger Capesize vessels, which we believe could provide additional fuel cost savings. While spot rates are at an eleven-year high, we still believe that this cycle has additional legs as steady demand growth coupled with lower fleet growth should result in improved utilization and elevated charter rates over the next few years.”

In line with these comments, Fyhr starts his overage of the stock with a Buy rating and a $30 price target. If correct, the analyst’s objective could deliver one-year returns of 41%.

All in all, Genco has attracted 6 recent analyst reviews, and these break down 5 to 1 in favor of Buy over Hold, for a Strong Buy consensus. The average price target of $27.33 implies an upside of ~29% for the next 12 months, from the current trading price of $21.22. (See GNK stock analysis on TipRanks)

To find good ideas for stocks trading at attractive valuations, visit TipRanks’ Best Stocks to Buy, a newly launched tool that unites all of TipRanks’ equity insights.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the featured analysts. The content is intended to be used for informational purposes only. It is very important to do your own analysis before making any investment.

The post 3 Monster Growth Stocks to Buy From the Drybulk Space, According to One Analyst appeared first on TipRanks Financial Blog.

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Growing Surgical Revenue and Automating OR Processes a Top Priority for Health Systems

Growing Surgical Revenue and Automating OR Processes a Top Priority for Health Systems
PR Newswire
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Oct. 5, 2022

Survey finds 95% of health system executives desire more automation and less reliance on manual OR processes



Growing Surgical Revenue and Automating OR Processes a Top Priority for Health Systems

PR Newswire

Survey finds 95% of health system executives desire more automation and less reliance on manual OR processes

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Oct. 5, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Increasing surgical services revenue is a top priority for healthcare systems, with automation seen as a way to accomplish it, according to a new survey of healthcare executives conducted by The Health Management Academy.

Seventy-six percent of respondents named increasing surgical services revenue as a top priority, while half the health systems represented said they plan to increase investments across their surgical services in the next two years.

The survey, which was conducted in August 2022 in partnership with Qventus, the leading provider of AI-based software for care operations automation, was completed by 21 executives whose titles include chief medical officer, chief operating officer, VP of perioperative services, VP of operations, VP of surgical specialties, surgical chair, clinical enterprise lead and business operations director for surgical services. The responding executives represent 19 health systems with an average total operating revenue of $6.3 billion.

Key findings include:

  • Increasing surgical services revenue is a top priority for the majority (76%) of executives. About half (52%) of health systems are planning to increase investments across the surgical service line in the next two years.

  • Health system executives are focused on end-to-end growth strategies. Top strategies to increase surgical revenue growth include: improving operating room (OR) scheduling and access (81%), growing case volumes (71%), and increasing surgical referrals to reduce patient leakage (57%).

  • The majority (71%) of executives report 11% to 30% of their health system's OR time is not optimally used.

  • Nearly all (95%) of surveyed healthcare systems are looking to automate OR scheduling more and rely less on manual processes.

  • All (100%) executives agree there is opportunity to improve surgeon satisfaction rates. Their strategies for improving satisfaction include addressing burnout, streamlining internal processes and using technology to augment manual tasks.

"This data confirms what we hear from our leading health system members: executives know their financial recovery from the pandemic depends on growing surgical revenue, and that requires driving integrated strategies that optimize access, case volumes and mix, as well as market share. Leaders recognize that manual processes are holding them back, and they view automation as an essential capability to grow their surgical services revenue," said Brian Contos, SVP of Research & Member Insights at The Health Management Academy.

The crisis in surgical revenue has been aggravated by the COVID-19 pandemic and staffing shortages, which have cut into hospital operating margins. As a result, healthcare systems are looking for technology that will allow them to maximize their existing capacity without adding resources.

"The survey findings validate what we've been hearing from our health system partners," said Mudit Garg, Co-founder and CEO of Qventus. "Hospitals are focused on making their perioperative services more productive and efficient, but their existing tools and EHRs are incapable of doing it. To gain a new competitive advantage, they need a new approach and are turning to automation software."

The Qventus Perioperative Solution is the only solution that automates strategic growth of surgical services. By combining AI & machine learning, behavioral science, and comprehensive data, the solution creates new white space on OR and surgical robot calendars, automatically fills open times with strategic cases, and identifies referral and outmigration improvement opportunities — while also giving visibility into OR & surgeon performance. As a result, health systems can unlock over 50% of blocks otherwise unused, increase robotic cases by 33%, and add over 2 cases per OR per month using existing resources.

To view the full report, click here.

About Qventus

Qventus is the leading provider of AI-based software for care operations automation. Integrating with EHRs, the Qventus platform uses AI, machine learning, and behavioral science to power best-practice solutions for inpatient, perioperative, emergency department, and command center settings. As a partner to leading health systems and hospitals across the country, including Boston Medical Center, HonorHealth, M Health Fairview, Saint Luke's Health System, and ThedaCare, Qventus delivers proven outcomes, including over 2 new surgical cases added per operating room per month, 30-50% fewer excess days, and 1 full day reduction in length of stay. For more, visit

Media Contact:

Jim Sweeney
Amendola Communications on behalf of Qventus
(216) 650-3376

View original content to download multimedia:

SOURCE Qventus

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JOLTs jolted: Did the Fed break the labour market?

In the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) August release of the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) report, the number of job openings, a measure…



In the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) August release of the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) report, the number of job openings, a measure of demand for labour, fell to 10.1 million. This was short of market estimates of 11 million and lower than last month’s level of 11.2 million.

It also marked the fifth consecutive month of decreases in job openings this year, while the August unemployment rate had ticked higher to 3.7%, near a five-decade low.

In the latest numbers, the total job openings were the lowest reported since June 2021, while incredibly, the decline in vacancies of 1.1 million was the sharpest in two decades save for the extraordinary circumstances in April 2020. 

Healthcare services, other services and retail saw the deepest declines in job openings of 236,000, 183,000, and 143,000, respectively.

With total jobs in some of these sectors settling below pre-pandemic levels, the Fed’s push for higher borrowing costs may finally be restricting demand for workers in these areas.

The levels of hires, quits and layoffs (collectively known as separations) were little changed from July.

The quits rate (a percentage of total employment in the month), a proxy for confidence in the market was steady at 2.8%.

Source: US BLS

From a bird’s eye view, 1.7 openings were available for each unemployed person, cooling from 2.0 in the month prior but still above the historic average. 

The market still appears favourable for workers but seems to have begun showing signs of fatigue.

Ian Shepherdson, Economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics noted that it was too soon to suggest if a new trend had started to emerge, and said,

…this is the first official indicator to point unambiguously, if not necessarily reliably, to a clear slowing in labour demand.

Nick Bunker, Head of Economic Research at Indeed, also stated,

The heat of the labour market is slowly coming down to a slow boil as demand for hiring new workers fades.

Ironically, equities surged as investors pinned their hopes on weakness in headline jobs numbers being the sign of breakage the Fed needed to pull back on its tightening.

Kristen Bitterly, Citi Global Wealth’s head of North American investments added,

(In the past, in) 8 out of the 10 bear markets, we have seen bounces off the lows of 10%…and not just one but several, this is very common in this type of environment.

The worst may be yet to come

As for the health of the economy, after much seesawing in its projections, which swung between 0.3% as recently as September 27 and as high as 2.7% just a couple of weeks earlier, the Atlanta Fed GDPNow estimate was finalized at a sharply rebounding 2.3% for Q3, earlier in the week.

Rod Von Lipsey, Managing Director, UBS Private Wealth Management was optimistic and stated,

…looking for a stronger fourth quarter, and traditionally, the fourth quarter is a good part of the year for stocks.

As I reported in a piece last week, a crucial consideration that has been brought up many a time is the unknown around policy lags.

Cathie Wood, Ark Invest CEO and CIO noted that the Fed has increased rates an incredible 13-fold in a span of just a few months, which is in stark contrast to the rate doubling engineered by Governor Volcker over the span of a decade.

Pedro da Costa, a veteran Fed reporter and previously a fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, emphasized that once the Fed tightens policy, there is no way to know when this may be fully transmitted to the economy, which could lie anywhere between 6 to 18 months.

The JOLTs report reflects August data while the Fed has continued to tighten. This raises the probability that the Fed may have already done too much, and the environment may be primed to send the jobs market into a tailspin.

Several recent indicators suggest that the labour market is getting ready for a significant deceleration.

For instance, new orders contracted aggressively to 47.1. Although still expansionary, ISM manufacturing data fell sharply to 50.9 global, factory employment plummeted to 48.7, global PMI receded into contractionary territory at 49.8, its lowest level since June 2020 while durable goods declined 0.2%.

Moreover, transpacific shipping rates, a leading indicator absolutely crashed, falling 75% Y-o-Y on weaker demand and overbought inventories.

Steven van Metre, a certified financial planner and frequent collaborator at Eurodollar University, argued

“…the next thing to go is the job market.“

A recent study by KPMG which collated opinions of over 400 CEOs and business leaders at top US companies, found that a startling 91% of respondents expect a recession within the next 12 months. Only 34% of these think that it would be “mild and short.”

More than half of the CEOs interviewed are looking to slash jobs and cut headcount.

Similarly, a report by Marcum LLP in collaboration with Hofstra University found that 90% of surveyed CEOs were fearful of a recession in the near future.

It also found that over a quarter of company heads had already begun layoffs or planned to do so in the next twelve months.

Simply put, American enterprises are not buying the Fed’s soft-landing plans.

A slew of mass layoffs amid overwhelming inventories and a weak consumer impulse will result in a rapid decline in price pressures, exacerbating the threat of too much tightening.

Upcoming data

On Friday, the markets will be focused on the BLS’s non-farm payrolls data. Economists anticipate a comparatively small addition of jobs, likely to be near 250,000, which would mark the smallest monthly increase this year.

In a world where interest rates are still rising, demand is giving way, the prevailing sentiment is weak and companies are burdened by excessive inventories, can job cuts be far behind?

The post JOLTs jolted: Did the Fed break the labour market? appeared first on Invezz.

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Spread & Containment

Measuring the Ampleness of Reserves

Over the past fifteen years, reserves in the banking system have grown from tens of billions of dollars to several trillion dollars. This extraordinary…



Over the past fifteen years, reserves in the banking system have grown from tens of billions of dollars to several trillion dollars. This extraordinary rise poses a natural question: Are the rates paid in the market for reserves still sensitive to changes in the quantity of reserves when aggregate reserve holdings are so large? In today’s post, we answer this question by estimating the slope of the reserve demand curve from 2010 to 2022, when reserves ranged from $1 trillion to $4 trillion.

What Are Reserves? And Why Do They Matter?

Banks hold accounts at the Federal Reserve where they keep cash balances called “reserves.” Reserves meet banks’ various needs, including making payments to other financial institutions and meeting regulatory requirements. Over the past fifteen years, reserves have grown enormously, from tens of billions of dollars in 2007 to $3 trillion today. The chart below shows the evolution of reserves in the U.S. banking system as a share of banks’ total assets from January 2010 through September 2022. The supply of reserves depends importantly on the actions of the Federal Reserve, which can increase or decrease the quantity of reserves by changing its securities holdings, as it did in response to the global financial crisis and the COVID-19 crisis.

Reserves Have Ranged from 8 to 19 Percent of Bank Assets from 2010 to 2022

Sources: Federal Reserve Bank of New York; Federal Reserve Economic Data, FRED (“TLAACBW027SBOG”); authors’ calculations.

Why does the quantity of reserves matter? Because the “price” at which banks trade their reserve balances, which in turn depends importantly on the total amount of reserves in the system, is the federal funds rate, which is the interest rate targeted by the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) in the implementation of monetary policy. In 2022, the FOMC stated that “over time, the Committee intends to maintain securities holdings in amounts needed to implement monetary policy efficiently and effectively in its ample reserves regime.” In this ample reserves regime, the Federal Reserve controls short-term interest rates mainly through the setting of administered rates, rather than by adjusting the supply of reserves each day as it did prior to 2008 (as discussed in this post). In today’s post, we describe a method to measure the sensitivity of interest rates to changes in the quantity of reserves that can serve as a useful indicator of whether the level of reserves is ample.

The Demand for Reserves Informs Us about Rate Sensitivity to Reserve Shocks

To assess whether the level of reserves is ample, one needs to first understand the demand for reserves. Banks borrow and lend in the market for reserves, typically overnight. The reserve demand curve describes the price at which these institutions are willing to trade their balances as a function of aggregate reserves. Its slope measures the price sensitivity to changes in the level of reserves. Importantly, banks earn interest on their reserve balances (IORB), set by the Federal Reserve. Because the IORB rate directly affects the willingness of banks to lend reserves, it is useful to describe the reserve demand curve in terms of the spread between the federal funds rate and the IORB rate. In addition, we control for the overall growth of the U.S. banking sector by specifying reserve demand in terms of the level of reserves relative to commercial banks’ assets.

There is a clear nonlinear downward-sloping relationship between prices and quantities of reserves, consistent with economic theory. The chart below plots the spread between the federal funds rate and the IORB against total reserves as a share of commercial banks’ total assets.  When reserves are very low, the demand curve has a steep negative slope, reflecting the willingness of borrowers to pay high rates because reserves are scarce. At the other extreme, when reserves are very high, the curve becomes flat because banks are awash with reserves and the supply is abundant. Between these two regions, an intermediate regime–that we refer to as “ample”–emerges, where the demand curve exhibits a modest downward slope. The color coding of the chart reflects the shifts in the reserve demand curve over time. In particular, the curve appears to have moved to the right and upward around 2015 and then moved upward after March 2020, at the onset of the COVID pandemic.

Reserve Demand Has Shifted over Time

Sources: Federal Reserve Bank of New York; Federal Reserve Economic Data, FRED (“TLAACBW027SBOG,” “IOER,” and “IORB”); authors’ calculations.

This chart highlights two of the main challenges in estimating the slope of the reserve demand curve. First, the curve is highly nonlinear, which means that a standard linear estimation approach is not appropriate. Second, various long-lasting changes in the regulation and supervision of banks, in their internal risk-management frameworks, and in the structure of the reserve market itself have resulted in shifts in the reserve demand curve. A third challenge is that the quantity of reserves may be endogenous to banks’ demand for them. Therefore, to properly measure the reserve demand curve, one must disentangle shocks to supply from those to demand. As we explain in detail in a recent paper, our estimation strategy addresses all three of these challenges.

Estimating the Slope of the Reserve Demand Curve

Our approach provides time-varying estimates of the price sensitivity of the demand for reserves that can be used to distinguish between periods in which reserves are relatively scarce, ample, or abundant. The chart below presents our daily estimates of the slope of the demand curve, as measured by the rate sensitivity to changes in reserves. Although we do not have a precise criterion for when reserves are scarce versus ample, during two episodes in our sample, the estimated rate sensitivity is well away from zero. The first episode occurs early in our sample, in 2010, and the second emerges almost ten years later, in mid-2019. In two other periods—during 2013-2017 and from mid-2020 through early September 2022—the estimated slope is very close to zero, indicating an abundance of reserves. The remaining periods are characterized by a modest negative slope of the reserve demand curve, consistent with ample (but short of abundant) reserves. The overall pattern of these estimates is robust to changes in the model specification, such as including spillovers from the repo and Treasury markets or measuring reserves as a share of gross domestic product or bank deposits (instead of as a share of banks’ assets).

Rate Sensitivity Changed over Time, Following the Path of Reserves

Sources: Federal Reserve Bank of New York; Federal Reserve Economic Data, FRED (“TLAACBW027SBOG,” “IOER,” and “IORB”); authors’ calculations.

Interest Rate Spreads Alone Are Not Reliable Indicators of Reserve Scarcity

As we discuss in our paper, the time variation in the estimated price sensitivity in the demand for reserves is based on observations of small movements along the demand curve due to exogenous supply shocks. The location of the curve itself, however, also changes over time. That is, there is not a constant relationship between the level of reserves and the slope of the reserve demand curve.  

In our paper, we find evidence of both horizontal and vertical shifts in the reserve demand curve, with vertical upward shifts being particularly important since 2015. This finding implies that the level of the federal funds-IORB spread may not be a reliable summary statistic for the sensitivity of interest rates to reserve shocks, and that estimates of the price sensitivity in the demand for reserves provide additional useful information.

In summary, we have developed a method to estimate the time-varying interest rate sensitivity of the demand for reserves that accounts for the nonlinear nature of reserve demand and allows for structural shifts over time. A key advantage of our methodology is that it provides a flexible and readily implementable approach that can be used to monitor the market for reserves in real time, allowing one to assess the “ampleness” of the reserve supply as market conditions evolve.

Gara Afonso is the head of Banking Studies in the Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s Research and Statistics Group.

Gabriele La Spada is a financial research economist in Money and Payments Studies in the Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s Research and Statistics Group.   

John C. Williams is the president and chief executive officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.  

How to cite this post:
Gara Afonso, Gabriele La Spada, and John C. Williams, “Measuring the Ampleness of Reserves,” Federal Reserve Bank of New York Liberty Street Economics, October 5, 2022,

The views expressed in this post are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the position of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York or the Federal Reserve System. Any errors or omissions are the responsibility of the author(s).

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